Farfetch’s losses have increased in its last financial year amid the business gearing up to prepare for a float.

Pre-tax losses swelled from £28.6m to £34m in the year to December 31, 2016 as the luxury etailer – founded in 2008 by boss José Neves – invested in people and technology in preparation for a float.

Sales rocketed from £87.1m to £151.3m, with £12m coming from the UK, £40m from the EU and the remainder from the rest of the world.

People costs rose from £11.7m to £17.1m, with staff numbers rising from 189 to 233, while technology costs rose from £16m to £20m.

Farfetch is expected to float on the New York stock exchange within the next 18 months and has already gone through several rounds of funding, despite being less than a decade old.

The past year has been an eventful one for the retailer, which sells products from hundreds of luxury fashion labels and manages ecommerce functions for designers.

Net-a-Porter founder Natalie Massenet joined the company earlier this year as co-chairman, while former Outnet president Stephanie Phair joined as its first chief strategy officer last November.